Krystal 2016-07-30 17:04:47 发表于  [  国内考试  ]
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The 1,000,000 Bank-Note Mark Twain

At the end of an hour my reasonings had crystallized into this verdict.


Maybe those men mean me well, maybe they mean me ill; no way to decide that - let it go. Theyve got a game, or a scheme, or an experiment, of some kind on hand; no way to determine what it is - let it go. Theres a bet on me; no way to find out what it is - let it go. That disposes of the indeterminable quantities; the remainder of the matter is tangible, solid, and may be classed and labeled with certainty. If I ask the Bank of England to place this bill to the credit of the man it belongs to, theyll do it, for they know him, although I dont; but they will ask me how I came in possession of it, and if I tell the truth, theyll put me in the asylum, naturally, and a lie will land me in jail. The same result would follow if I tried to bank the bill anywhere or to borrow money on it. I have got to carry this immense burden around until those men come back, whether I want to or not. It is useless to me, as useless as a handful of ashes, and yet I must take care of it, and watch over it, while I beg my living. I couldnt give it away, if I should try, for neither honest citizen nor highwayman would accept it or meddle with it for anything. Those brothers are safe. Even if I lose their bill, or burn it, they are still safe, because they can stop payment, and the Bank will make them whole; but meantime Ive got to do a months suffering without wages or profit - unless I help win that bet, whatever it may be, and get that situation that I am promised. I should like to get that; men of their sort have situations in their gift that are worth having.


I got to thinking a good deal about that situation. My hopes began to rise high. Without doubt the salary would be large. It would begin in a month; after that I should be all right. Pretty soon I was feeling first-rate. By this time I was tramping the streets again. The sight of a tailor-shop gave me a sharp longing to shed my rags, and to clothe myself decently once more. Could I afford it? No; I had nothing in the world but a million pounds. So I forced myself to go on by. But soon I was drifting back again. The temptation persecuted me cruelly. I must have passed that shop back and forth six times during that manful struggle. At last I gave in; I had to. I asked if they had a misfit suit that had been thrown on their hands. The fellow I spoke to nodded his head towards another fellow, and gave me no answer. I went to the indicated fellow, and he indicated another fellow with his head, and no words. I went to him, and he said: " Tend to you presently."

我对那份美差浮想联翩,期望值也开始上升。不用说,薪水决不是个小数目。过一个月就要开始上班,从此我就会万事如意了。转眼间,我的自我感觉好极了。这时,我又在大街上逛了起来。看到一家服装店,一股热望涌上我的心头:甩掉这身破衣裳,给自己换一身体面的行头。我能买得起吗?不行;除了那一百万英镑,我在这世上一无所有。于是,我克制住自己,从服装店前走了过去。可是,不一会儿我又转了回来。那诱惑把我折磨得好苦。我在服装店前面来来回回走了足有六趟,以男子汉的气概奋勇抗争着。终于,我投降了;我只有投降。我问他们手头有没有顾客试过的不合身的衣服。我问的伙计没搭理我,只是朝另一个点点头。 我向他点头示意的伙计走过去,那一个也不说话,又朝第三个人点点头,我朝第三个走过去,他说:“这就来。”


Krystal 2021-08-03 14:03:26 重新编辑

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